Grafting with Pereskiopsis sp.
General Growth Parameters
Light intensity tolerance:
Daylight Hours: 6-16
Shade tolerance: Tolerates partial shade, benefits from at least a few hours of direct sun. Stems will become very thin and stretch profusely, leaves will be much thinner and wider when in low light.
Water tolerance: Tolerates massive amounts of rain if not cold, but will rot if waterlogged for extended periods.
Drought tolerance: Does not tolerate true dry soil for long. Leaves will wilt and fall off, never growing back. Leafless Pereskiopsis are quite poor rootstocks.
Growth speed: This is a very fast growing cactus, and is very good at growing grafted scions fast. This is one of the fastest growers for grafting purposes. Due to its small size, it is best suited for small scions, such as seedlings, and is poor once scions become larger (generally after a couple years). That said it is the fastest root stock for getting seedlings up in size super fast.
You can certainly play with grafting pereskiopsis onto another cactus, it does work fine. We cannot think of a single use of doing so other than having fun experimenting.
Weaknesses of Pereskiopsis as a rootstock
* Not cold tolerant, should be kept above 3C to live and about 10-15C to grow fast.
* Not super strong, it will not support large heavy scions unless they rest on something.
* Not a long lasting stock, usually no more than 3-5 years total before needing degrafting or regrafting to a better stock.
* Creates bloated, unnatural looking scions, far more than any other stock. This may not be of concern to everyone, but for collecting purposes it ruins the plants aesthetics.
Grafting onto Pereskiopsis rootstocks
We have discussed grafting on to Pereskiopsis in some detail already, you may view that page at: Grafting Cactus Seedlings onto Pereskiopsis spathulata.
Here are some pointers to make grafting to Pereskiopsis easier
* Keep the plant well watered prior to grafting and stop watering 1-2 days prior to actually graft date.
* Keep humid after grafting, we use plastic bags placed over the graft. Allow fresh air though to prevent rust rot.
* Keep out of direct light.
* Try grafting to a stock with as many leaves as possible.
* Remove rootstock offsets daily. Pereskiopsis tend to send out new shoots literally daily once cut, stay on top of it and as the scion grows this becomes a non-issue.
* Graft near the tip, Pereskiopsis gets woody fast and is horrible when grafted onto hard old growth.
Pereskiopsis are fast and easy in general. Ideally a root stock will have decently thick, wide leaves. This is accomplished by growing under 50% shade cloth and allowing a couple hours a day of direct sun. All day direct sun grows very fat, almost round leaves, that are short and narrow, not the best for catching more light. If light is too dim then the leaves will be ultra-thin and wide, try for a happy medium that grows thicker and wider leaves.
For 1-2 weeks prior to grafting, keep well watered to ensure the plant is well hydrated. 1-2 days prior to grafting cut off water (not dry soil). Plants like this should be perfect for grafting to.